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Brazil nuts Brazilian bank robbers leave streets littered with cash after blowing up ATMS and gun battle with police

Over two hours, they attacked four banks, blowing up the cash machines in each one, according to local news reports

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Road workers were taken hostage by the robbers and forced to act as human shields

Road workers were taken hostage by the robbers and forced to act as human shields

Ocupa Rio/Twitter

Road workers were taken hostage by the robbers and forced to act as human shields

AN armed gang set up road-blocks to rob a series of banks in a Brazilian city today which ended in a gun battle with police and cash littering the streets.

The attackers drove into Criciúma in a number of several vehicles which they used to block streets .

They also set fire to vehicles along a tunnel into the city from the main highway to stop police reinforcements from nearby towns.

Over two hours, they attacked four banks, blowing up the cash machines in each one, according to local news reports.

Two people, one a police officer, were injured during the siege in the city which is 800 miles south of Rio de Janeiro.

Road workers were taken hostage by the robbers and forced to act as human shields between the attackers and police during the stand-off.

They were later released unharmed, according to Criciúma Mayor Clésio Salvaro, who spoke to Brazil's Globo News.

Salvaro posted on Twitter just after 2:30 a.m. local time saying, "Criciúma is the target of a major assault," urging residents to stay home.

Videos shared on social media showed deserted city streets with the sound of gunfire going off in the distance.

In one video, what appears to be the six road workers can be seen sitting on the city's crosswalk as gunfire continues around them.

Other videos showed what looked like cash littering the city streets with locals collecting the bills.

While the robbers escaped at least four people were arrested as they picked up cash on the street of which $150,000 was recovered.

A similar, military-style attack took place in Sao Paulo last year.

Two dozen robbers in that case attempted to blow up several ATM machines when eleven assailants were killed by police.

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